Diarrhea in Kamarang contained – situation being monitored

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The Ministry of Public Health has reported that doctors in Kamarang have been able to contain what seemed to be a sudden upsurge in the number of persons suffering from diarrhea. A team of health officials visited the hinterland community during last week.

Minister of Public Health, Dr. George Norton said the health team and the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) were able to put measures in place to handle the situation.

The minister reported that about 25 persons had shown signs of active diarrhea but the medical team was able to control the situation and treat the patients. “At this point in time there is no person who has active diarrhea. We had the medications on board, we had whatever was needed, medical supplies and the doctors were on top of it,” Norton said.

Maternal and Child Health Officer, Ertenesia Hamilton, said that fourteen of the 25 cases diagnosed were children and those cases have subsided and are under surveillance.

Meanwhile, Norton opined that a limited supply of potable water that forced residents to use water from a nearby river for drinking and other domestic purposes may have contributed to the illness.

“We suspected its water borne because the water is very low and the villagers tend to use the water for domestic purposes. We understand that the well that was supposed to be in that particular area was not completed,” Norton said.

Public Health Minister Dr George Norton
Public Health Minister Dr George Norton

According to a GINA report, Norton’s ministry is in communication with the Guyana Water Authority, which was visiting Kamarang, to determine how early the well would be completed.

Norton said tanks with filters attached to the nozzle were distributed. “After filling the tank with water and you drain it through that nozzle it should be properly filtered and pure for human consumption,” Norton said.

The Ministry of Public Health and the Guyana Water Inc. are implementing preventative measures which would decrease the chances of a reoccurrence of the outbreak.

The health team has collected water samples that will be tested to confirm whether the water from the river caused the diarrhea. Another health team will remain in the area to carry out surveillance.

Additionally, a team from the Ministry of Public Health is expected to visit Kamarang to carry out further investigations, Norton said.

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